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View Full Version : Is LeBron the biggest choke artist in Finals history?



SMosley21
06-13-2011, 02:06 PM
This quote is taken from an article on ESPN.com, about Deshawn Stevenson talking about how good it felt to beat the Heat.

http://sports.espn.go.com/dallas/nba/news/story?id=6657084&campaign=rss&source=NBAHeadlines
"James struggled throughout the Finals, averaging 17.8 points, which was 8.9 fewer than his regular season average. That dropoff from the regular season to the Finals was the largest in NBA history, according to the Elias Sports Bureau."

So is Lebron the biggest choke artist in NBA Finals history then?

Kraft
06-13-2011, 02:14 PM
One must try before one can choke.

GrangerRanger
06-13-2011, 02:16 PM
Kobe in 2000?

troyc11a
06-13-2011, 02:29 PM
I was not aware that the statistics backed up the fact Lebron is the greatest choker in NBA finals history. I though it was merely everyone piling on him because of the whole decision thing. To all who claim he is not, "Scoreboard."

Speed
06-13-2011, 02:35 PM
Starks went 0 for like 17 in a deciding finals game at one point, I believe. If not it was something close.

Basketball Fan
06-13-2011, 02:35 PM
Kobe in 2000?

Yes because when he hoisted the Larry O'Brien trophy at our expense at Staples Center that was the first thing people thought of.

mattie
06-13-2011, 02:40 PM
Kobe's 15ppg at 36% shooting is definitely one of the worst performances in finals history. I wouldn't say LeBron's was so bad as he just didn't really show up.

Kobe showed up and played terrible, so there is a difference there...

Since86
06-13-2011, 02:41 PM
I'm gonna plug Bill Simmons' new website here a bit. Here's an article from another writer on Grantland.com's staff. He has written my answer a lot better than I could have.


On May 30 of this year, Skip Bayless went viral on Chris Broussard in the middle of a heated argument about who knew LeBron James and who didn't know LeBron James and who had a soul and whose soul was languishing in purgatory with Ahmad Rashad and Jim Gray. The Internet has since moved on, as it always does, but the blowup highlighted just how much we want to know about LeBron and just how little knowing we have been able to scrape together. Despite several high-profile looks into how LeBron carries himself, who helped him make The Decision, how many toes are on his right foot, and what happened or did not happen with his mother and Delonte West, the profile of the World's Most Gifted Man still lacks its keystone revelation.

As such, LeBron has become the league's Kaspar Hauser, and every sportswriter-turned-psychiatrist has, at some point or another, huddled over him with phrenology charts and calipers, extrapolating god knows what from the Exquisite Corpse of all that has ever been written about him. The truth is, nobody really knows what is wrong. Last season, after LeBron unraveled in Game 5 against the Celtics, Kenny Smith and Charles Barkley both expressed their shock at what they had witnessed, with Barkley intimating that he had never seen a superstar player play like that before. What that meant exactly was never explained, not because there was no effort made to describe what had happened, but because that had no historical context. Nobody knew what to call it because nobody had ever seen it before.

Last night, we saw more of that. After hitting his first four shots in the game's opening minutes, LeBron missed his next three. From that point on, he disappeared, not only on offense, where he put up a combined three shots in the second and third quarter, but also on defense, where the rampager we saw in Chicago stood in one spot on the floor, looking confused and unhappy. He did not crash the boards, he did not fill the passing lanes, he did not rally anything or anyone. At a few points in those quarters, he seemed to snap to attention, but his version of "being aggressive" — a phrase he has ground down into a meaningless dust over the course of these Finals — involved him putting his head down and running into the heart of the Mavericks defense. At the start of the fourth quarter, LeBron was on the bench. When he finally came in at the nine-minute mark, his plus/minus was at minus-20. Every other starter on the Heat was on the happy side of zero. What was even more telling was just how little drama there was about his reentry. I cannot imagine anyone watching really expected LeBron to take over and lead his team to victory. What was expected of LeBron was exactly what LeBron did. With 8:25 left in the quarter, he set up on the left block and shot a turnaround jumper that entirely missed the rim. At the 4:10 mark, he stood passively on the right-hand side of the 3-point line and whipped off not one, but two passes to his teammates. On both occasions, when LeBron caught the ball, the Mavs defense was still shuffling to get in place. What should have been an easy dunk was just another in a litany of LeBron deferrals. In the last two minutes, with the game out of reach and the fans milling out of the stadium, LeBron hit a meaningless 3-pointer. At that moment, his effort seemed like bad theater — the lost, sad flailing of a man who doesn't quite understand that the show is over and that everyone hated it.

Perhaps, the reason why nobody has ever answered the question "What is really going on with LeBron James?" isn't because we are all missing out on some vast, unplumbed psychological space of entitlement, insecurity, and self-destruction, but rather because the answer to the question is boring and self-evident. He is quickly becoming the problem nobody cares enough to solve, the bully whom you endure, not because you feel threatened, but because you've long since given up trying to reason with him. For the most part, the response to the coughing video wasn't outrage or even confusion, but rather a collective rolling of the eyes and a deeply felt, deeply annoyed sigh. That, more than anything else, was just LeBron being LeBron.

The fact that such a great player has been reduced to a cliché, and that the cliché describes his failings, should be a story in itself. But LeBron's performance in the Finals and the echo from the end of the Boston series exist somewhere outside our usual rhythm of "watch, react, and relate." In the postgame press conference, a reporter asked LeBron and Wade about the word "choke" and if they felt as if they had choked the series away. LeBron let Wade answer, but what struck me about the question wasn't Wade's tepid answer or LeBron's deferral, but rather that the word "choke" doesn't seem to really describe what happened in this series. LeBron did not shrink up in the moment. He did not miss big shots or free throws. He did not turn the ball over or travel or call a timeout. Instead, he just kind of wasn't there. And what was even weirder than the public's lack of surprise, or LeBron's hostile postgame press conference, or even the defensiveness with which he carried himself throughout the season, was just how the villain in this particular tragedy felt staid, warmed-over.

It is not hard to be a compelling *******. Rasheed Wallace's unabashed humanity, Ron Artest's ongoing psychodrama, Jordan's dickishness, and the vacillation of opinion on whether or not Kobe Bryant is a megalomaniac or if Kobe Bryant burns with some ineffable "competitiveness," added a dimension to their legacy as players. We psychoanalyzed them because it was fun, and, sometimes, even instructive to do so. With LeBron, one gets the feeling that even if his story never drags itself out of this chapter, we have already exhausted our desire to figure out why.

By Jay Caspian Kang (http://www.grantland.com/search/_/query/jay-caspian-kang)
http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/6655966/lebron-exquisite-corpse?view=print

I think one word sums it up, heart. LeBron doesn't have any. He's been handed everything since the beginning, and I think he feels like people should just roll over for him.

I think he realized that he couldn't do it alone in Cleveland, so he thought he could simply team up with two other superstars and all would be right in the world.

He would rather it be handed to him, then him go out and take it from someone. He doesn't have any heart. Watching the Heat barely cross halfcourt with more than a minute remaining in the game last night, when they were on offense, disgusted me.

My opinion on him had been dropping like a stone for a while, but after last night, I lost all respect for him. I used to respect him as a competitor, and could look past my feelings on him as a person, but how he flat out quit last night is unexcuseable.

But going back to the question, no, he didn't choke. In order to choke you have to fail, and in order to fail you actually have to try. LeBron didn't try.

Basketball Fan
06-13-2011, 02:45 PM
Kobe's 15ppg at 36% shooting is definitely one of the worst performances in finals history. I wouldn't say LeBron's was so bad as he just didn't really show up.

Kobe showed up and played terrible, so there is a difference there...

Yet Kobe had a Game 4 against us that changed the entire series and lead him to his first ring so really yes LeBron is worse than him.

You also seem to forget that Kobe was considered an actual sidekick to Shaq back then.

He was better in the next two Finals when he truly came into his own.

Pacer Fan
06-13-2011, 02:52 PM
Kobe in 2000?

Kobe had a severe ankle sprain from game 2, which he only played 9 minutes in and did not play in game 3. Game 5 he reaggavated it and got into foul trouble do to his loss of step. I don't believe he choked at all in that series...I wish he would have tho.

mattie
06-13-2011, 02:56 PM
Yet Kobe had a Game 4 against us that changed the entire series and lead him to his first ring so really yes LeBron is worse than him.

You also seem to forget that Kobe was considered an actual sidekick to Shaq back then.

He was better in the next two Finals when he truly came into his own.

You're delusional.

I'm sorry, and not to rehash and old argument.. I realize you love Kobe. I understand it completely, as a player who worked so hard to become great this is understandable. This doesn't change the facts though. If he hadn't played the entire series the Lakers would been a much better team. That's how terrible he played.

PR07
06-13-2011, 02:57 PM
I don't really think he choked, he just never showed up.

And uh-oh, it's a LeBron vs. Kobe war, hide the kids... (despite these two never having played a meaningful game against one another)

HC
06-13-2011, 02:58 PM
http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/news?slug=mc-spears_heat_failed_lebron_james_dwyane_wade_061311


“All the people that was rooting on me to fail, at the end of the day they have to wake up tomorrow and have the same life that they had before they woke up today,” James said. “They have the same personal problems they had today. I’m going to continue to live the way I want to live and continue to do the things that I want to do with me and my family and be happy with that.

“They can get a few days or a few months or whatever the case may be on being happy about not only myself, but the Miami Heat not accomplishing their goal. But they have to get back to the real world at some point.”

-Lebron James



I am leaning towards saying he isn't the biggest choke artist, but he is certainly a narcissistic sob.

Since86
06-13-2011, 03:11 PM
You're delusional.

I'm sorry, and not to rehash and old argument.. I realize you love Kobe. I understand it completely, as a player who worked so hard to become great this is understandable. This doesn't change the facts though. If he hadn't played the entire series the Lakers would been a much better team. That's how terrible he played.

You do remember that Kobe sprained his ankle in the second quarter of game 2, didn't return, and then didn't even play in game 3?

Then the next three games he put up 26, 8, and 28....

mattie
06-13-2011, 03:13 PM
You do remember that Kobe sprained his ankle in the second quarter of game 2, didn't return, and then didn't even play in game 3?

Then the next three games he put up 26, 8, and 28....

Yes I remember those finals very well. He did truly have a great game 4. Game 5 and 6 he once again on cue played terrible basketball. That was back when he was really trying to establish himself as a hero. He took so many bad shots we were cheering for him to shoot it.

Since86
06-13-2011, 03:23 PM
That's odd. Here's SI.com's game recap of Game 6.




Bryant had 26 points and 10 rebounds as he used this series to cement his status as a superstar. He made only 8-of-27 shots but continually weaved his way inside Indiana's defense, cracking it before O'Neal smashed it into pieces.
"I can't wait to do it again," said Bryant, who is all of 21 years old.
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/basketball/nba/recaps/2000/06/19/lal_ind/

They're talking about the Finals being Kobe's coming out party, as far as being a superstar, and in this discussion we're knocking LeBron down notches.

Right there is a huge difference.

Really?
06-13-2011, 03:27 PM
Lebron hasn't came through when it counts on numerous occasions, but he never asked for anything to be handed to him... heart... he has put his team on his back plenty of times and has been apart of many comebacks.

I know MIA didn't get it this year but Lebron and Wade still have a chance to win more championships than Shaq, Bryant, Jordan, and Pippen...

Basketball is a team effort, this was the first year they were together and they almost one a championship... I bet they win 3 of the next 5 atleast...

LeBron is only 26 yrs old... a little less than 1 yr older than Tyler Hansbrough, lol... what I am trying to say is dude is still young, and he has accomplished a lot in his time just not a championship... but I am sure that he will get many in the near future...

I will say I wanted him to go to the clippers instead of MIA though but oh well...

Biggest choke artist... I would hold that off for now... he has plenty more NBA finals left in him to even thinking about giving him this title, Not to mention that in his first nba finals he was very good just didn't have a strong enough team to pull out the victory...

itzryan07
06-13-2011, 03:28 PM
idc if he sucked this finals, id still want him on this team

mattie
06-13-2011, 03:30 PM
I don't live in a bubble. I've been hearing the media preach about Kobe's greatness for 13 years now. This is nothing new. However, that doesn't change reality. He sucked. It's ok. It happens. Basketball is much more enjoyable if you just watch what happens.

However, the following narrative: "Kobe, the second coming of MJ has been greatest player of this generation who has willed his team to 5 titles, may be greater than MJ himself" continues to blind people to what actually happens.

It's not just Kobe. It's LBJ too. There is a large group of people who won't watch what happens, but would rather argue until they're blue that the narrative remains true.

A classic example is that horrid game 6 by Kobe. He wouldn't stop jacking up terrible shots. Yep people actually want to argue that was some defining moment for him. It wasn't. It was a growing experience. Namely, "stop taking terrible shots, and you'll make your team compete at a much higher level." It took Kobe years to learn that.

Basketball Fan
06-13-2011, 03:33 PM
You're delusional.

I'm sorry, and not to rehash and old argument.. I realize you love Kobe. I understand it completely, as a player who worked so hard to become great this is understandable. This doesn't change the facts though. If he hadn't played the entire series the Lakers would been a much better team. That's how terrible he played.



Yes I'm a fan of Kobe but I also give credit where its due can you?

That would be a no

Basketball Fan
06-13-2011, 03:35 PM
I don't live in a bubble. I've been hearing the media preach about Kobe's greatness for 13 years now. This is nothing new. However, that doesn't change reality. He sucked. It's ok. It happens. Basketball is much more enjoyable if you just watch what happens.

However, the following narrative: "Kobe, the second coming of MJ has been greatest player of this generation who has willed his team to 5 titles, may be greater than MJ himself" continues to blind people to what actually happens.

It's not just Kobe. It's LBJ too. There is a large group of people who won't watch what happens, but would rather argue until they're blue that the narrative remains true.

A classic example is that horrid game 6 by Kobe. He wouldn't stop jacking up terrible shots. Yep people actually want to argue that was some defining moment for him. It wasn't. It was a growing experience. Namely, "stop taking terrible shots, and you'll make your team compete at a much higher level." It took Kobe years to learn that.



Or maybe we actually saw it for ourselves and thus its true but again you're the one who's belittling others by saying they're delusional when you are acting as if you're the one being belittled here.

But even I give you a slight point that winning changes perception and if LeBron manages to win a few titles the perception of him will change at least from a professional standpoint to an extent.

And there are those who will never give credit where its due just like yourself.

Since86
06-13-2011, 03:41 PM
I find it funny that you're trying to downplay a 21year old in his first finals, that happened to have an off shooting night (with a badly sprained ankle mind you) while still putting up 26 pts and 10rebs so you can raise up a 26year old who's in his second appearance who didn't even want to have the ball in his hands towards the end of the game....

That's what doesn't make sense.

LeBron took a total of 3 shots through the second and 3rd quarters. I'd much rather have a player of Kobe's, or LeBron's for that matter, talent level shooting the ball and missing than not shooting and letting his inferior teammates handle the pressure.

mattie
06-13-2011, 03:47 PM
I find it funny that you're trying to downplay a 21year old in his first finals, that happened to have an off shooting night (with a badly sprained ankle mind you) while still putting up 26 pts and 10rebs so you can raise up a 26year old who's in his second appearance who didn't even want to have the ball in his hands towards the end of the game....

That's what doesn't make sense.

LeBron took a total of 3 shots through the second and 3rd quarters. I'd much rather have a player of Kobe's, or LeBron's for that matter, talent level shooting the ball and missing than not shooting and letting his inferior teammates handle the pressure.

Take a breather, no one is trying to downplay either player's legacy. The only thing I do is try to see each player or performance exactly as it is or was.

You seem to be thinking I'm judging either player's career as to who they are. I'm not. You're talking about bad performances in in the NBA finals. I brought up one.

Kobe in 2000. He played terrible. That's ok. It doesn't mean anything. It doesn't mean he sucks. It doesn't mean he's the greatest player ever. It doesn't mean he's average. It doesn't mean anything other than in the 2000 Finals, he played terrible.

As an athlete, unless you're MJ, and possibly Magic/Larry, things are simply not always going to go right. Sometimes you have bad games in big moments. Some times it takes players a lot longer to develop into a great player, see: Bryant, Kobe. Sometimes, you're lucky to join the league on a great team, see: Johnson, Magic. It happens so many different ways. Again, just enjoy the game.

Midcoasted
06-13-2011, 03:58 PM
No. I think it is clear that Lebron wasn't getting the calls he was getting all playoffs. The NBA is considered entertainment legally and TPTB could dictate who wins or loses to the refs, and it would not be illegal. It's a business and it's all about maximizing profits.

Maybe TPTB wanted Cuban on their side during this lockout? The free throw disparity in the Finals was obvious. The Mavericks were allowed to play the Heat physical and not get a ridiculous amount of fouls called like teams before.

Anyways, the NBA just made a lot of money right before the lockout with one of the highest rated playoffs ever...Hold over money so they don't go broke?:confused:

Since86
06-13-2011, 03:58 PM
I guess people need to start talking about how badly Dirk played in games 3 and 6 then.

He shot 6-19 in game 3, and 9-27 last night.

Shooting percentages don't give an accurate portrayal of how someone played a game overall. It shows how they shot, and that's about it. I'm not going to say a player played terrible, just because they struggled from the field. Basketball is a more complicated game than just shooting.

Sookie
06-13-2011, 04:02 PM
No. I think it is clear that Lebron wasn't getting the calls he was getting all playoffs. The NBA is considered entertainment legally and TPTB could dictate who wins or loses to the refs, and it would not be illegal. It's a business and it's all about maximizing profits.

Maybe TPTB wanted Cuban on their side during this lockout? The free throw disparity in the Finals was obvious. The Mavericks were allowed to play the Heat physical and not get a ridiculous amount of fouls called like teams before.

Anyways, the NBA just made a lot of money right before the lockout with one of the highest rated playoffs ever...Hold over money so they don't go broke?:confused:

It was pretty much even throughout the entire series. Or do you mean, when Lebron doesn't get every single call he struggles?

Lebron didn't get those calls because Lebron wasn't going to the basket looking to score. He was settling for jump shots (which he always ends up doing in the playoffs) or looking to pass.

mattie
06-13-2011, 04:04 PM
No. I think it is clear that Lebron wasn't getting the calls he was getting all playoffs. The NBA is considered entertainment legally and TPTB could dictate who wins or loses to the refs, and it would not be illegal. It's a business and it's all about maximizing profits.

Maybe TPTB wanted Cuban on their side during this lockout? The free throw disparity in the Finals was obvious. The Mavericks were allowed to play the Heat physical and not get a ridiculous amount of fouls called like teams before.

Anyways, the NBA just made a lot of money right before the lockout with one of the highest rated playoffs ever...Hold over money so they don't go broke?:confused:

In other news, the illuminati is responsible for the bailouts.

Kegboy
06-13-2011, 04:05 PM
Not to give LeBron a pass by any means, but Starks was worse. But then, at least he tried.

SMosley21
06-13-2011, 04:08 PM
Not to give LeBron a pass by any means, but Starks was worse. But then, at least he tried.

Starks had a bad game, and he was a role player. Lebron had a craptastic series and is the biggest star in the NBA.

Midcoasted
06-13-2011, 04:19 PM
In other news, the illuminati is responsible for the bailouts.

A lot of rich people that ran our country into the ground got even richer from the bailouts. I guess it doesn't matter as long as DWTS or AI are on and I'm getting those government tax credits and handouts. We've been fleeced people. Clinton left office with a surplus.

Point is, the rich will stop at nothing to get richer. You think they really wouldn't fix a few games to make shitloads of money? History would tell you otherwise. Learn from our past.

Midcoasted
06-13-2011, 04:28 PM
It was pretty much even throughout the entire series. Or do you mean, when Lebron doesn't get every single call he struggles?

Lebron didn't get those calls because Lebron wasn't going to the basket looking to score. He was settling for jump shots (which he always ends up doing in the playoffs) or looking to pass.

I agree. But why did he stop going to the basket? Why did the whistle stop blowing his way and why did he struggle? It leaves a ton of room for speculation. From some higher power handed him the order or else, and the refs did their part too, to Lebron is on the decline. He's already been in the league close to a decade. That will start to wear on your body, and I don't see how he maintains his speed and agility with his size past 30. One NBA season is like an entire college career for Lebron. This literally might be Lebron's window closing. Smaller players are the ones who usually have longer careers. Extra weight wears on the body quicker one would think.

I'm almost positive though the NBA will stop at nothing to at least give the Heat one or two championships. Our series with the Bulls caused me to lose a lot of faith is all I can say...

oxxo
06-13-2011, 04:43 PM
I'm far from a Lebron fan, disliking both his personality (narcisstic, arrogant, entitled) and his game (since it's based upon the fact he's allowed to travel, charge, and push people)... but I think that the media (and the Decision/intro) have overblown how 'poorly' he's played.

The Mavs are a damn good team, anyone who watched any of their series could see it plain and simple. The Heat are not a good TEAM; as some (many?) have said, Wade and Lebron both need the ball. They are not complementary players and never will be. They win due to overwhelming talent, not good basketball.

Anthem
06-13-2011, 05:18 PM
Biggest choke artist in Finals history?

Nope. That title goes to Shaq.

When he played against Hakeem.

Shade
06-13-2011, 05:22 PM
If the Heat had had Reggie Miller (in his prime) instead of LeBron James, they would have won. ;)

Pacer Fan
06-13-2011, 06:01 PM
Did you hear about the Championship shirts they made for Miami? The NBA is not going to ship them to 3rd world countries this time, like they have in the past! They say the shirts are a choking hazard! ;)

Hicks
06-13-2011, 06:52 PM
Biggest choke artist in Finals history?

Nope. That title goes to Shaq.

When he played against Hakeem.

Wasn't this recently dispelled by Sollozzo?

Anthem
06-13-2011, 07:34 PM
Wasn't this recently dispelled by Sollozzo?

Dunno, haven't read the board much recently. If you can find a link i'd be happy to read it.

Kegboy
06-13-2011, 07:56 PM
Starks had a bad game, and he was a role player. Lebron had a craptastic series and is the biggest star in the NBA.

Starks wasn't a role player, he was the second best player on his team, just like LeBron.

Ransom
06-13-2011, 08:03 PM
Nobodies going to mention Wilt?

Not sure if I would, but I'm surprised his name hasn't come up.

In four game sevens against Russell, the combined margin of victory for the Celtics was 9, and Wilt missed 24 free throws.

Pacer Fan
06-13-2011, 08:07 PM
Starks wasn't a role player, he was the second best player on his team, just like LeBron.
John Starks was most definitely a role player that had some out of body playoff performances. He was actually pretty dang good but he done alot of dumb things on the pine that just make ya shake your head.

Kegboy
06-13-2011, 10:07 PM
Sorry, I'm not letting this go. Sure, one can argue Starks was a role player for most of his career, but he averaged 19 points and lead the team in assists the year in question. He was without question their primary wing.

Anthem
06-13-2011, 10:25 PM
I'm loving the comparison of John Starks and LaBron. Awesome.

Indy1831
06-13-2011, 10:33 PM
LeBron is pathetic. This isnt the first time in sports history 2 superstars have been on the same team. Imagine Gretzky basically dissapear in the Cup on his own accord. Letting lesser players should 90% of the shots when his team really needs him.

Great players at anything always take command. Does it always help? No, but at least they show the will and determination to win.

All LeBron showed was fatigue. No excuse you got 3 months to rest. Give it every drop you get that 15 MIL for a reason.

BlueNGold
06-13-2011, 10:54 PM
LeBron had the look of a scared deer on his face most of the time. There is no question he choked. It was a combination of the pressure and the fact he knew deep down that the Mavs had the better team...and it all got to him.

BlueNGold
06-13-2011, 10:58 PM
I'm loving the comparison of John Starks and LaBron. Awesome.

I think Starks should take offense to that...

Heisenberg
06-13-2011, 11:38 PM
I'm loving the comparison of John Starks and LaBron. Awesome.I know, did dis dude jus did dis?

avoidingtheclowns
06-13-2011, 11:50 PM
Four Nick Anderson free throws also come to mind.

pacer4ever
06-14-2011, 01:33 AM
If LeBron just plays up to his talent(not above just ave) the Heat win in 5 IMO.

Basketball Fan
06-14-2011, 01:38 AM
Nobodies going to mention Wilt?

Not sure if I would, but I'm surprised his name hasn't come up.

In four game sevens against Russell, the combined margin of victory for the Celtics was 9, and Wilt missed 24 free throws.

Wilt eventually won a title so it tends to be forgotten.

And well most of us weren't alive

Basketball Fan
06-14-2011, 01:45 AM
Nobodies going to mention Wilt?

Not sure if I would, but I'm surprised his name hasn't come up.

In four game sevens against Russell, the combined margin of victory for the Celtics was 9, and Wilt missed 24 free throws.

Wilt eventually won a title so it tends to be forgotten.

And well most of us weren't alive

ballism
06-14-2011, 02:16 AM
Shaq vs. Hakeem and LeBron are two different beasts.
The thing is, LeBron didn't have great all around stats compared to regular season. His whole performance was one continuous choke.
Shaq had great stats, nearly or as good as Hakeem. He kept up with Hakeem and even outplayed him most of the time, except the crunch time.

But Shaq choked at the crunch time both ways. He couldn't carry his team offensively, and he couldn't stop Hakeem when it mattered. Hakeem went at Shaq for key baskets and took the series in 4 games.
LeBron was even worse offensively in big moments; but Heat defensive issues mostly aren't on him.

I think you can make a case for either "choke". Shaq was nearly a rookie though. Hakeem was maybe past his prime a little physically, but he was the smart veteran, and he did what he was supposed to do. For Shaq to perform better in that situation would be extremely clutch. For LeBron to perform better in this current situation would simply be normal.

Does Starks even count? Compared to full-series chokes, he did well. He was pretty clutch overall, one all time horrific game. Ray Allen had one of those too last year.

Anyway, that's all we have? Starks, Shaq and Wilt? Malone? I'm sure there've been bigger choke jobs for full sieries, maybe from less talented players, just can't think of any.

Heisenberg
06-14-2011, 02:19 AM
If Starks having a bad game means he choked I remember a certain someone that had a 1/16 performance. I'm jus'sayin.

Constellations
06-14-2011, 04:01 AM
Lebron was too busy promoting a caffeine strip that dissolves in your mouth, kind of like he does in the 4th quarter.

The Jackson shimmy
06-14-2011, 06:07 AM
I agree. But why did he stop going to the basket? Why did the whistle stop blowing his way and why did he struggle? It leaves a ton of room for speculation. From some higher power handed him the order or else, and the refs did their part too, to Lebron is on the decline. He's already been in the league close to a decade. That will start to wear on your body, and I don't see how he maintains his speed and agility with his size past 30. One NBA season is like an entire college career for Lebron. This literally might be Lebron's window closing. Smaller players are the ones who usually have longer careers. Extra weight wears on the body quicker one would think.

I'm almost positive though the NBA will stop at nothing to at least give the Heat one or two championships. Our series with the Bulls caused me to lose a lot of faith is all I can say...


Watching the last couple games of the Mavs series, I had very similar
thoughts.

Lebron has played alot of minutes in the last 8 years at (presumably
about) 260 lbs. I know that he's a physical specimen. But does
he really use it ?

He doesn't play in the post or defend the post. He plays a face-up,
more or less, 'finesse' game predicated on quickness, agility, etc.

He sure looks to me like he's lost a little bit of his explosiveness.

I don't care for the guy or give a rat's patoot wether he ever wins
an NBA title, etc. But if I did, I'd advise him to drop 10-12 lbs or
so to reduce the wear and tear on his body.

naptownmenace
06-14-2011, 11:17 AM
Sorry, I'm not letting this go. Sure, one can argue Starks was a role player for most of his career, but he averaged 19 points and lead the team in assists the year in question. He was without question their primary wing.

John Starks in Game 7 will always be considered the biggest Choker in finals history.

"In Game 7, Starks had one of the worst games of his career, shooting 2-for-18 from the field, including 0-for-10 in the fourth quarter." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Starks_%28basketball%29

He also missed all 7 3-pointers he attempted that game and he missed a 3 that could've tied the game late. The Knicks lost to the Rockets by only 6 points.

naptownmenace
06-14-2011, 11:19 AM
Watching the last couple games of the Mavs series, I had very similar
thoughts.

Lebron has played alot of minutes in the last 8 years at (presumably
about) 260 lbs. I know that he's a physical specimen. But does
he really use it ?

He doesn't play in the post or defend the post. He plays a face-up,
more or less, 'finesse' game predicated on quickness, agility, etc.

He sure looks to me like he's lost a little bit of his explosiveness.

I don't care for the guy or give a rat's patoot wether he ever wins
an NBA title, etc. But if I did, I'd advise him to drop 10-12 lbs or
so to reduce the wear and tear on his body.

IMO, it looked like Lebron was noticeably thinner this season than last. I noticed it when they showed some of the highlights from last season during the series against the Celtics.

Pacers#1Fan
06-14-2011, 11:28 AM
I didn't see this point made but in the two finals Lebron has appeared in he owns the first biggest drop-off in ppg average compared to his season scoring average and the sixth biggest drop-off. Not to mention he had more turnovers than assists in the Mavs series.

xBulletproof
06-14-2011, 06:35 PM
Lebron was too busy promoting a caffeine strip that dissolves in your mouth, kind of like he does in the 4th quarter.

He never dissolves in my mouth. I don't care what quarter it is.

SMosley21
06-16-2011, 04:17 PM
I didn't see this point made but in the two finals Lebron has appeared in he owns the first biggest drop-off in ppg average compared to his season scoring average and the sixth biggest drop-off. Not to mention he had more turnovers than assists in the Mavs series.

That was pretty much the basis for this thread.


This quote is taken from an article on ESPN.com, about Deshawn Stevenson talking about how good it felt to beat the Heat.

http://sports.espn.go.com/dallas/nba/news/story?id=6657084&campaign=rss&source=NBAHeadlines
"James struggled throughout the Finals, averaging 17.8 points, which was 8.9 fewer than his regular season average. That dropoff from the regular season to the Finals was the largest in NBA history, according to the Elias Sports Bureau."

So is Lebron the biggest choke artist in NBA Finals history then?

sothenrobbiesaid
06-17-2011, 07:28 AM
Come on, guys. Seriously?

In my opinion, all of this stuff about LeBron choking is silly. Did he seem passive, even nervous, about playing? Yes. Did he choke? I think these are two completely different things.

John Starks went 2-18, including 0-10 from the field in the 4th quarter, when the Knicks and Rockets met in the finals in '94. That, in my opinion, is choking.

LeBron averaged about 20/7/7, and shot over 50% for the field. He didn't shot the three well (nor free throws) and had 4 turnovers a game, but I don't think that constitutes choking.

Dang it, I just read some of the other posts and someone brought up Starks already. My apologies!

pacer4ever
06-17-2011, 08:44 AM
LBJ needs to fix his footwork the guy is god awful at it. That is the the thing that causes him to struggle IMO. He will continue to struggle untill this improves IMO. The reason he has never developed a good post game is that reason inparticlaur Kobe and Jordan both had beast footwork and fundamentals at a young age LBJ doesn't. LBJ is not very fundamentally sound IMO . LBJ also doesn't pass unless it is an assist he doesn't just pass to pass IMO doesn't make the correct basketball play all the time. LBJ needs to improve his footwork ASAP and actually work in the post every elite player has good footwork and a decent post game IMO.

Since86
06-17-2011, 09:49 AM
LeBron averaged about 20/7/7, and shot over 50% for the field. He didn't shot the three well (nor free throws) and had 4 turnovers a game, but I don't think that constitutes choking.


Wow those are some nice stats, (long pause) for someone other than LeBron.

He averaged less than 20pts in the Finals, 17.8pts actually. That's almost 9 full points LESS than his season average of 26.7pts.

Answer this question. Do great players play better or worse in the playoffs?

We all know the answer. Better.

LeBron played worse. Every statistical category dropped, outside of steals. That went from 1.6 season average to 1.7 in the Finals. Yes, that's choking.

Taterhead
06-17-2011, 10:19 AM
Lebrons only problem is that he hasn't embraced the style of play that will make him completely unstoppable. He has to learn to play in the post. There isn't a SF in the league that would have a chance against him down low.

He wants to play like a PG.

Whiskeyjim
06-19-2011, 12:23 PM
LeBron is pathetic. This isnt the first time in sports history 2 superstars have been on the same team. Imagine Gretzky basically dissapear in the Cup on his own accord. Letting lesser players should 90% of the shots when his team really needs him.

Great players at anything always take command. Does it always help? No, but at least they show the will and determination to win.

All LeBron showed was fatigue. No excuse you got 3 months to rest. Give it every drop you get that 15 MIL for a reason.Ummm. Gretzky always had more assists than goals, especially down the stretch. I don't understand this comparison.

LeBron as choker is irrelevant.

We just watched a team beat a collection of superstars. End of story.

Hicks
06-19-2011, 12:34 PM
I guess I just didn't feel like I saw a lot of choking with LeBron. I think of choking as when I think I see a player making mistakes out of fear/nervousness/stress/worry, and not just because they happened to have a bad game. I personally didn't notice that coming from LeBron.

I certainly noticed that he didn't try to take over these games or the big moments, and I think he should have (intelligently) forced it a lot more than he did instead of "disappearing", but I don't consider that to be choking.

Maybe LeBron was afraid, nervous, stressed, or worried, but personally I didn't really sense that. I think it was something otherwise.

Pacer Fan
06-19-2011, 12:49 PM
One of the following happened for sure.

1.Mavs defense was one of the best of all time.
2.Lebron is not what we all thought he was and not one of the best of all time.
3.Lebron just wanted more from his teamates and didn't want to be the star of the team at all cost.
4.Lebron choked.

I pick # 4

Since86
06-20-2011, 10:11 AM
I guess I just didn't feel like I saw a lot of choking with LeBron. I think of choking as when I think I see a player making mistakes out of fear/nervousness/stress/worry, and not just because they happened to have a bad game. I personally didn't notice that coming from LeBron.

I certainly noticed that he didn't try to take over these games or the big moments, and I think he should have (intelligently) forced it a lot more than he did instead of "disappearing", but I don't consider that to be choking.

Maybe LeBron was afraid, nervous, stressed, or worried, but personally I didn't really sense that. I think it was something otherwise.

I know this is going to be a bad example but anyways.

Ever watched the movie 8 Mile? Do you think Eminem's character chokes? I think so.

Quite frankly it doesn't matter if you fail because you can't handle the pressure, or if you don't even try because you're afraid of the pressure.

The outcome is still the same.

He failed, and that's all that really matters, IMHO. I think semantics can be overlooked, when we're talking about the failure to produce results.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Choke_(sports)

I think he fits the unofficial definition perfectly.

Pacer Fan
06-21-2011, 10:09 PM
I know this is going to be a bad example but anyways.

Ever watched the movie 8 Mile? Do you think Eminem's character chokes? I think so.

Quite frankly it doesn't matter if you fail because you can't handle the pressure, or if you don't even try because you're afraid of the pressure.

The outcome is still the same.

He failed, and that's all that really matters, IMHO. I think semantics can be overlooked, when we're talking about the failure to produce results.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Choke_(sports)

I think he fits the unofficial definition perfectly.

One day, Lebron may be on Wikipedia/Choke_sports as an example! :laugh:

BoomBaby31
06-21-2011, 10:57 PM
LeBron chokes every year. This year was worse, the dude rolled away from the ball every 4th quarter. He wasn't only choking--he was choking scared.

King Tuts Tomb
06-22-2011, 06:06 AM
LeBron chokes every year. This year was worse, the dude rolled away from the ball every 4th quarter. He wasn't only choking--he was choking scared.

Two finals appearances and two MVPs by the age of 26, not choking and not scared. That choking loser Michael Jordan didn't make a finals until he was 29.

LeBron, and the Heat, weren't good enough to beat the Mavs. That's it. The choking story is a fake media narrative that anyone who knows basketball shouldn't be buying.